Chess Olympiad 2012 live countdown (5 days left)

Chess Olympiad 2012

Hello everyone and welcome to the live countdown to the Chess Olympiad 2012 on! We continue our daily minute by minute updates and six days before the official start of the event we will refresh the latest news regarding the Olympiad in Istanbul, interviews with top players, polls, photos, videos, and more.

Scroll down for all news in reverse chronological order.

Review: 7 days to the Chess Olympiad / 6 days to the Chess Olympiad

Chess Olympiad news / Participants men / Participants women

17:00 CET

Yet another day of live countdown to the Olympiad is finishing. The event is getting closer and closer. We leave you today with a Chess Olympiad 2012 video preview. See you tomorrow for more live coverage and updates!

16:25 CET

WIM Sue Maroroa, wife of GM Gawain Jones, was supposed to be top board for the New Zealand chess team. Here is what WIM Sue Maroroa wrote in their mutual website a month ago:

“I’m pleased to announce that we will be both participating in the 2012 Olympiad in Turkey. Gawain will play board 2 behind Mickey Adams for the English team and I’ll be board 1 for the New Zealand’s Women’s team. There seems to be a lot of complications regarding the regulations in place and of course now the banning of the arbiters. But let’s not detract away from the main reason we are there, to play some chess! If you have never been to an Olympiad (this is my 6th Bled, Calvia, Turin, Dresden and Khanty Mansisk) I highly recommend you come along! But remember to try and get into the infamous Bermuda Party, where you see players from all walks of life let loose on the dance floor. In Khanty Mansisk, we had twice the fun as the Irish Party had it’s first event, let’s hope there will be another!”

However, in an unexpected turn we learn from the New Zealand Chess Federation official website that (updated August 22nd), “Sue Maroroa has withdrawn from the Women’s team (due to passport/visa problems). NZCF is grateful to Marany Meyer for agreeing to take up the place at extremely short notice. The team is now: wfm Helen Milligan, Judy Gao, wfm Nicole Tsoi, wfm Natasha Fairley, wim Marany Meyer.”


16:05 CET

Important addition to the previous two updates. The three highest-placed teams in the open section and the five highest-placed teams of the women section are entitled to participate in the World Chess Team Championships in the following year.

The World Team Championship 2013 is going to take place in Antalya, Turkey. Besides the 3 Olympiad qualifiers, the winner of 2011 (Armenia), the host country (Turkey), qualifiers from Europe, Asia, America, and Africa, and a FIDE nominee are going to participate.

16:00 CET

As addition to the 15:45 update, before the start of the tournament, the Technical Administration Panel divides the teams into 5 rating categories, on the basis of their position in the initial overall ranking list. Every team that finished with the highest score for its category, provided that it has not won medals, receives a prize of money or goods.

Then follow the individual medals. Players assigned to the same board number in their respective team lists are competing for individual board prizes namely: gold, silver and bronze medals. For the purposes of this award, the players performance rating is compared. If the performance rating is equal, the tiebreak is:
(a) the number of games, and if this is also equal by
(b) the players performance rating after deducting the result against the lowest rated opponent, and if this is also equal by
(c) the players performance rating after deducting the results against the two lowest rated opponents and so on.

Only players who have played a minimum of 8 games are eligible for board prizes.


15:45 CET

Ever wondered what are the trophies and prizes received by Chess Olympiad winners? The winning team in the open section of the Chess Olympiad receives the “International Hamilton-Russell Cup”. The winning team in the women section of the Chess Olympiad receives the “International Vera Menchik Cup”. The winning teams for the best composite scores in the open and women Olympiads receives the “Nona Gaprindashvili International Trophy”. The federation of the respective winning teams has custody of the cups, which are property of FIDE, until the following Olympiad. Both trophies are to be competed for at each successive Olympiad; they cannot be acquired in perpetuity.
The dates of the tournament and the name of the winning federation are engraved on the base of the Cup. Should the original trophy be lost, a replacement has to be made on the same pattern.
The winning federations of the tournaments, and the names of their players, are also recorded in the FIDE Golden Book, of which the President has custody.

Every member of the winning team (players, reserves and captain) receives a gold medal. Similarly, the team finishing second receives silver medals and the team in third place, bronze.

15:24 CET

Speakers from around the world will make their presentations at the first in a series of international chess in schools conferences, sponsored by Rosneft, on August 30th.  This first conference lays the emphasis on Chess in Schools from the viewpoint of FIDE’s national federations, especially in the light of our CiS100 Projects in Slovakia and Slovenia, now being rolled out in Algeria, Moldova and Peru, with more to follow. Sporting and research aspects will also be covered.

Speakers include Prof.Dr.Caner Açikada, Dean of the School of Sport Science and Technology, Hacettepe University, Ankara and Malola Prasath Thittanimuttam Sundaramadhavan, Director for Research, Development & Dissemination, the Foundation for Learning Research in Chess, India.

15:12 CET

The French championship also enters the final rounds, you can follow R9 in a few minutes here with computer analysis.

14:57 CET

Until the Olympiad, daily live games from the European Youth will be shown on Go to this link for U18 and U16 or here for U14, U12, U10, and U8. It is also the broadcast method at a special dedicated page at the official website.

14:35 CET

Theodoros Tsorbatzoglou, a key member of the Greek chess, commented on the chances for Greece at the Chess Olympiad. “In the chess field we will see a very interesting competition with the traditional strong teams fighting for the medals.  The Greek men team, with the addition of experienced GM Vasilis Kotronias is able to play for the first 10 positions with a good pairing in the last 3 rounds. The Greek women team hope is on the young player WIM Katerina Pavlidou who will bring to the team new power.”

As a member of the FIDE Events Commission, Mr. Tsorbatzoglou said, “FIDE Congress will be crowed and creative. Many new proposals are coming, changes of statutes, etc. The FIDE EVE Commission will enhance professionalism, a lot of innovations, a newly published Organizers Manual, and a FIDE IO seminar which is already over-registered  by distinguished participants.”

14:15 CET

As we can see the Turkish team are taking the task very seriously. One more proof is the photo published by WJCC GM Alexander Ipatov in his twitter @Ipatov_Chess. The caption reads, “The official suit of the Turkish National Chess Team for the Olympiad”

GM Ipatov in the official suit for the Chess Olympiad

14:05 CET

Back in Turkey, the host teams are already underway with their preparation. One of the coaches, who is currently with part of the team at EYCC 2012, is GM Efstratios Grivas. He shared with Chessdom, “I think that this year we have the strongest team ever and we should fight for a top 20 places. The team is young and hungry for success, so my expectations are high!”

Turkey will have for the first time a World Champion at the top boards, after GM Alexander Ipatov won the World Junior Championship. More about the Turkish teams in an article by Elizabeth Paehtz.

13:50 CET

Talking about Spain, the Extremadura region is going to follow closely the Chess Olympiad. Their representative GM Manuel Pérez Candelario, born in Zafra, is going to play for the Spanish team. This is the third time Candelario plays for Spain, after being in the B team in Calvia and in the A team in the European Team Chess Championship 2005 in Goteborg.

13:35 CET

Jumping to another continent, we see the team of Uruguay preparing for the Chess Olympiad. The players are currently at a training camp at Baños de Montemayor that will continue until August 23rd. The coach at the training camp is GM Manuel Pérez Candelario, who will also be a player at the Olympiad, but for the team of Spain.

The training session will finish with a match between the teams of Uruguay and the Spanish Club Linex Magic. The women team of Uruguay will play with Linex Magic B team.

13:00 CET

Mentioning Aronian, we cannot skip bringing some news about Arianne Caoli as well. WIM Caoli will be the top board player for the team of Australia. Last year she spent several months in Armenia doing her dissertation on the country itself. She will be crossing fingers for Armenia’s success in the men section, but also will fully concentrate to help her teammates WIM Emma Guo, WIM Bilajna Novakovic-Dekic, Giang Nguyen, and Sally Yu in the women section.

12:45 CET

More on the history of Chess Olympiads tomorrow. Now we continue with news from the players. Levon Aronian mentioned in an extensive interview he is ready for the Chess Olympiad 2012. His main preparation with the team of Armenia has been a physical one, as the event is quite long and is followed by the Grand Slam Final Masters 2012. Aronian will arrive earlier than his teammates in Istanbul, to “dive into the atmosphere of the city”, something that he states to be essential for his performance.

Aroninan reminds that Armenia is favorite for the Chess Olympiad, as they won the World Team Championship and failed to win the European Team Championship only in the last round.

12:25 CET

The Women Chess Olympiads have alternated periods of domination by different nations. USSR won 4 out of the first 5 unofficial Women Olympiads, interrupted only by Romania. USA and Israel were convincing at the following events, only to be followed by 5 golds by USSR. Hungary took two consecutive events in 1988 and 1990 with the Polgar sisters dominating the scene, until Georgia came along and scored 3 consecutive gold medals. All changed again in 1998 with China coming to first place 3 times in the next six years.

Lately, with the fast development of women chess, the events have been more dynamic and the last Olympiads had different winners – Ukraine in 2006, Georgia in 2008, and Russia in 2012.

Year Event Gold Silver Bronze
1957 1st Women’s Chess Olympiad USSR 10½ Romania 10½ East Germany 10
1963 2nd Women’s Chess Olympiad USSR 25 Yugoslavia 24½ East Germany 21
1966 3rd Women’s Chess Olympiad Romania 22 Hungary 20½ East Germany 17
1969 4th Women’s Chess Olympiad USSR 26 Hungary 20½ Czechoslovakia 19
1972 5th Women’s Chess Olympiad USSR 11½ Romania 8 Hungary 8
1974 6th Women’s Chess Olympiad USA 13½ Romania 13½ Bulgaria 13
1976 22nd Chess Olympiad Israel 17 England 11½ Spain 11½
1978 23rd Chess Olympiad USSR 16 Hungary 11 West Germany 11
1980 24th Chess Olympiad USSR 32½ Hungary 32 Poland 26½
1982 25th Chess Olympiad USSR 33 Romania 30 Hungary 26
1984 26th Chess Olympiad USSR 32 Bulgaria 27½ Romania 27
1986 27th Chess Olympiad USSR 33½ Hungary 29 Romania 28
1988 28th Chess Olympiad Hungary 33 USSR 32½ Yugoslavia 28½
1990 29th Chess Olympiad Hungary 35 USSR 35 China 29
1992 30th Chess Olympiad Georgia 30½ Ukraine 29 China 28½
1994 31st Chess Olympiad Georgia 32 Hungary 31 China 27
1996 32nd Chess Olympiad Georgia 30 China 28½ Russia 28½
1998 33rd Chess Olympiad China 29 Russia 27 Georgia 27
2000 34th Chess Olympiad China 32 Georgia 31 Russia 28½
2002 35th Chess Olympiad China 29½ Russia 29½ Poland 28
2004 36th Chess Olympiad China 31 USA 28 Russia 27½
2006 37th Chess Olympiad Ukraine 29½ Russia 28 China 27½
2008 38th Chess Olympiad Georgia 18 Ukraine 18 USA 17
2010 39th Chess Olympiad Russia 22 China 18 Georgia 16

12:05 CET

Here is the general standings by medals at the men Chess Olympiads. The standings follow the “Olympic” tiebreak, arranged by gold, silver (TB1), and bronze (TB2).

Rank Country 1st place 2nd place 3rd place Total
1  Soviet Union 18 1 0 19
2  Russia 6 2 1 9
3  Hungary 5 7 2 14
4  United States 5 5 9 19
5  Ukraine 2 1 2 5
6  Armenia 2 0 3 5
7  Yugoslavia 1 7 5 13
8  Poland 1 3 3 7
9  Czechoslovakia 1 2 1 4
10  Germany* 1 1 4 6
11  England 0 3 3 6
12  Argentina 0 3 2 5
13  Netherlands 0 1 1 2
13  Sweden 0 1 1 2
13  Israel 0 1 1 2
16  Bosnia and Herzegovina 0 1 0 1
16  China 0 1 0 1
16  Denmark 0 1 0 1
16  Uzbekistan 0 1 0 1
20  Bulgaria 0 0 1 1
20  Estonia 0 0 1 1
20  Romania 0 0 1 1
20  Switzerland 0 0 1 1

11:55 CET

Some statistics about the winners and medalists of the Olympiad history. The Chess Olympiads started with total domination by Hungary and United States. Until 1939 the only countries to interrupt them were the Czechoslovakia (the 1st unofficial Olympiad) and Poland (the 3rd Chess Olympiad).

After 1952 came the reign of USSR. The Soviet Union has the most gold medals, a total of 18 golds, 1 silver, and 0 bronze. They are followed / inherited by Russia that after 1989 has six gold medals and holds the second place in the overall standings. Third is Hungary with 5 golds, the same number has USA but with two bronze medals less. Other countries with gold medals are Ukraine (2), Armenia (2), Yugoslavia (1), Poland (1), Czechoslovakia (1), and Germany (1).

11:35 CET

The director of Chessity Janton van Apeldoorn commented, “The Chess Olympiad is the most anticipated chess event, including in itself the fighting team spirit that is unique for the chess world. It is no surprise that Russia, China, Germany, and USA are favorites, but I cannot hide that the games of Holland will be the most interesting for me.”

The team of Holland for this event (men section): GM Anish Giri, GM Jan Smeets, GM Ivan Sokolov, GM Daniel Stellwagen, GM Loek Van Wely, and (women section) WIM Anne Haast, IM Tea Lanchava, GM Peng Zhaoquin, WIM Lisa Schut, WIM Arlette Van Weersel.

11:15 CET

GM Vladimir Georgiev, who recently achieved yet another success in his career as a coach of Natalia Pogonina, is going to play on top board at the Olympiad. He shared with Chessdom, “My personal goal is to raise ELO at this Olympiad, while I hope the team finishes in top 30. The heavy favorites for the title are Russia and Armenia in the men section. In the women section not getting a gold medal will be failure for China.”

11:00 CET

Hello everyone and welcome to our third live preview of the Olympiad 2012 in Istanbul. It is the team chess event of the season and we continue following the news around the teams.

Yesterday you had the chance to see the opinions of IM Torstein Bae, GM Naiditsch, GM Miton, GM Julio Granda, coaches Dohoian and Rublevsky, WGM Natalia Pogonina, Theodoros Tsorbatzoglou, GM Mamedyarov, Peter Zhdanov, etc. We also presented you the playing hall plans, the official hotels of the Chess Olympiad 2012, the city of Istanbul.

Today we will upgrade those statements and information, and will have new players and chess specialists featured.